Back in the Seventies and Eighties I founded and ran several Fleet Street photo agencies specialising in stock images of celebrities from pop stars to politicians. These were syndicated to the National and International press and Television. These days I am active in the Microstock world and this blog charts my journey as well as, hopefully, providing inspiration and ideas to others. Image buyers should also find this blog useful with links to my portfolios and regular updates on new uploads. Unless otherwise stated all images are my copyright and may not be reproduced or copied. Comments are very welcome but will be reviewed before publication. Enjoy your visit. Regards, David.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

One browser or two?

Like a large chunk of the world, my computer came pre-loaded with Microsoft software which, by default, left me using Internet Explorer to access the internet. Generally it has worked just fine for me but on the odd occasion I was getting a stream of "Internet Explorer Cannot Display The Web Page" messages. I also found one or two sites where I just wasn't able to access certain parts due to incompatability.
This led me to think maybe I should have an alternative browser installed. Not being a computer expert I had concerns that this might cause problems with clashes between the two browsers. However, I eventually took the obvious step and did some research on the internet. What I found was that not only would there be no problems with having an extra browser installed but actually it was highly desirable. As one article pointed out - what happens if you cannot access the internet from your usual browser? You then have no way of downloading an alternative. Another actually claimed to have 16 different browsers installed. Apart from the fact I didn't realise that many existed I still cannot see why you would need to go to that extreme.
Now reassured, I went ahead and (based on personal recommendations) installed Google Chrome as my alternative browser. It only took a few minutes to install and there have been no problems at all. What has proved facinating is how different the various stock photo sites look when accessed by an alternative browser. Various features are in different places and some I couldn't access before now work - such as the Keyword Trends feature at Shutterstock.
In conclusion, I am glad I made the decision and though I still use IE as my usual browser there have been a number of times that I have switched to the alternative.
As I said before, I am not a computer expert so, as a health warning here, please do your own research on this and check out the various browsers available before making any decisions.
Regards, David.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

June sales updates:

A mixed set of results in June - but overall pleasing.

Shutterstock excelled with 104 downloads bringing in a BME in earnings of $98.26. This was achieved from two Enhanced Downloads paying $28 each. One was the ever popular Tentertainment music festival (pictured) and the other was an archive B/W image of the 1989 Trades Union Congress in Blackpool. June also saw another milestone as my total earnings at SS crossed the $1000.00 line.

Dreamstime produced 7 downloads ($10.90). Frustratingly their review of editorial images has slowed greatly (I now have three batches going back some 14 days in the queue). According to their forum they have seen a big increase in editorial submissions and are training up extra reviewers to catch up with the backlog.

Bigstock continues to show promise with 5 downloads ($7.70) -all editorial images.

Istock dissapointed in June with just 8 downloads ($4.88) plus a further $3.64 from a BME of 13 Partner Program sales.

123RF also dissapointed with just 7 downloads ($5.04). My worst month there since October 2011. Not sure what's happening there - they were gaining me a growing number of (mainly) editorial sales but that seems to have tailed off in the last few months.

Yaymicro sold one image of media tycoon Robert Maxwell, paying a worthwhile 3.75 euro.

Finally, another nice surprise from Mostphoto when an image of The Red Arrows produced a subscription sale for 5 euros. This took me neatly over the 10 euro payout level so I was able to get my first ever payment from them. Annoyingly I had to pay a 0.70 euro fee to Paypal to get this. An email to Mostphotos received a prompt and friendly reply that this was normal on Paypal. Well, no it's not - not unless you are selling something on Ebay or whatever. This did happen once before with a payment from Yaymicro and they (Yay) promptly apologised and credited my account with the fee amount. Anyone else had this issue with Mostphotos payouts?

Recent shoots saw images of the historic Cinque Port town of Rye in East Sussex (some now online) and coverage of the 2012 Tentertainment music festival (awaiting edit).

July has seen a good start at Shutterstock, so I'll see if this continues before the famous Summer Slowdown kicks in. Regards, David.